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Endogenous Political, Institutional, Cultural, and Geographic Determinants of Intermunicipal Cooperation—Evidence from Slovakia

Author

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  • Katarína Melichová

    () (Department of Regional and Rural Development, Faculty of European Studies and Regional, Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, 949 76 Nitra, Slovakia)

  • Lukáš Varecha

    () (Department of Regional and Rural Development, Faculty of European Studies and Regional, Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, 949 76 Nitra, Slovakia)

Abstract

All over Europe, but especially in post-communist countries, the institutional environment has been undergoing major changes. In Slovakia, regaining their autonomy has led local governments on the path of fragmentation, unsustainably high expenditures for the provision of public services, and an increase in transaction costs. Current policies targeting these issues are heavily focused on intermunicipal cooperation (IMC). Based on four case studies of different institutional arrangements, this paper aims to investigate which endogenous political, institutional, cultural, and geographic factors influence cooperation among Slovak municipalities. Through the application of social network analysis and regression analysis, we reached several relevant conclusions. A number of common assumptions were confirmed, namely that population size and heterogeneity play a major role, but also that the impact of political affiliation as a deciding factor of IMC is not as straightforward as previous evidence suggested. Results also underline the importance of cross-sectoral partnerships such as the EU’s LEADER initiative as a viable alternative to more traditional forms of IMC (but with some limitations).

Suggested Citation

  • Katarína Melichová & Lukáš Varecha, 2020. "Endogenous Political, Institutional, Cultural, and Geographic Determinants of Intermunicipal Cooperation—Evidence from Slovakia," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(2), pages 1-25, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:12:y:2020:i:2:p:709-:d:310382
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Frederic Blaeschke, 2014. "What drives small municipalities to cooperate? Evidence from Hessian municipalities," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201414, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    2. Sara Hughes & Jacqueline Peterson, 2018. "Transforming Municipal Services to Transform Cities: Understanding the Role and Influence of the Private Sector," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 10(1), pages 1-9, January.
    3. Ramiro Berardo & John T. Scholz, 2010. "Self‐Organizing Policy Networks: Risk, Partner Selection, and Cooperation in Estuaries," American Journal of Political Science, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 54(3), pages 632-649, July.
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    5. Germà Bel & Mildred E. Warner, 2016. "Factors explaining inter-municipal cooperation in service delivery: a meta-regression analysis," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 91-115, April.
    6. Xu Wang & Xiaoming Wang & Jingxia Wu & Guochao Zhao, 2017. "Social Network Analysis of Actors in Rural Development: A Case Study of Yanhe Village, Hubei Province, China," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(4), pages 869-882, December.
    7. Jana Soukopová & Gabriela Vaceková, 2018. "Internal factors of intermunicipal cooperation: what matters most and why?," Local Government Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(1), pages 105-126, January.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Peter Bezák & Peter Mederly & Zita Izakovičová & Milena Moyzeová & Magdaléna Bezáková, 2020. "Perception of Ecosystem Services in Constituting Multi-Functional Landscapes in Slovakia," Land, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(6), pages 1-17, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    intermunicipal cooperation; institutional arrangement; LEADER; nodal region; social network analysis; political affiliation; ethnic and religious heterogeneity;

    JEL classification:

    • Q - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics
    • Q0 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - General
    • Q2 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q3 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q5 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products

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